NEW YORK (Dec. 23)
Former Israeli Premier Golda Meir said last night that her more than three weeks in the United States and Canada have convinced her that despite the anti-Israel resolutions in the United Nations, Israel is not isolated. “Isolated? Absolute nonsense.” Mrs. Meir told some 2000 Jewish leaders attending a National Dinner of Tribute to her sponsored by the Israel Bond Organization at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel.
Noting it was her last night in the U.S. before returning to Israel, Mrs. Meir declared that “the greatest victory of Israel and of the Jewish people is that there is a feeling of having the same fate for you and for us. Israel has become an integral part of your life.”
Sam Rothberg, general chairman of the Israel Bond Organization, who presided at last night’s dinner, said that since her arrival in the U.S., a record-breaking total of $27,650,000 in Israel Bonds was sold, “the largest amount of cash received by the Israel Bond drive in any comparable period with the exception of the Yom Kippur War.”
AFRAID FOR FUTURE OF WORLD
Mrs. Meir spoke bitterly of the UN accepting a “murderer” like Yasir Arafat, head of the Palestine Liberation Organization, and treating him as a head of state. She said she was afraid, but it was fear for the future of the world and not for Israel. She said if the late British Prime Minister Winston Churchill would have faced Arab oil blackmail. Churchill would have said it is better to be cold and standing on your feet than warm and on your knees.
Mrs. Meir said that Israel learned in the Yom Kippur War to be prepared and be strong. But she said Israel’s strength is not only in weapons but in her people. She noted that in last week’s ABC-TV program on Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, his village and his prosperous home were shown. But she said the camera then went across the street and showed the homes on the other side with the comment “nothing has changed.” She said no Israeli Premier would live in a “palace” while nothing has changed for the people.
In pledging the fullest support to Israel, Rothberg said there was an “unbreakable bond between American Jewry and the people of Israel.” He also noted that “the year ahead may be the most critical year not only in the history of Israel but in the history of the entire, Jewish people.” Mayor Abraham D. Beame, who is serving as honorary chairman of the Greater New York Committee for State of Israel Bonds, paid tribute to Mrs. Meir and emphasized the importance of the Israel Bond program.